Shouldn’t Airliners Have Hydrostatically Released EPIRBs?

We have had two airlines disappear this year, Malaysia Airlines Flight 370 in March and another this month. Both hit the water and sank. The most recent incident at least left debris on the surface that marked the crash site, but even so it took a substantial search to locate the wreckage. MH370 resulted in a huge search effort that was to my knowledge fruitless.

Our friend, Ken White had a very reasonable question, Why don’t airliners have hydrostatically released EPIRBs? Good question. Having two would not be unreasonable. The devices might also be activated by sudden high g-forces.

2 thoughts on “Shouldn’t Airliners Have Hydrostatically Released EPIRBs?

  1. Yes. Next question…….

    I don’t know much about aeroplanes but I have asked myself similar questions in the past after an incident. There must be a reason surely? Or could it be simply nobody thought to do it? Surely not? These machines cost millions and the global society is litigious so airlines must do all they can to mitigate risk, or do they? It appears not.

    Compare the average airline passenger with the average military air passenger or even oil rig worker. I bet many tramp around the globe dressed in exactly the same way as they go to the mall. Can you imagine if civilians weren’t allowed to fly unless they had completed a survival training session in a dunk tank? Or they could only fly if wearing once only suits with life jackets? No I can’t either. Air travel is too much of a convenience and so global society takes the risks. Much the same can be said of mobile phone usage when driving or indeed driving itself. Society is more concerned with folk devils and imagined risk; ban the gun to save the children but yes they can go play in the backyard pool for example.

    We live in an age where a few hours wait on top of a twelve hour journey due to bad weather, computer failure, or industrial action is newsworthy; a journey that in a grandparents’ youth would have taken days or weeks by ship and train. Yet many flyers don’t know how a jet engine works or indeed how aeroplanes actually fly.

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